Mosley reports decline in local cases

With the past two weeks recorded at 201 and 184 new COVID-19 cases in Harlan County, Judge-Executive Dan Mosley said it is good to see the numbers going down as last week’s count read 118.

“After 201 cases the week before last, I was afraid that we would see cases go up from that number last week. Thankfully and fortunately, we saw a steep decline. Hopefully, the numbers continue to drop,” he said.

On Monday, the county recorded 18 new cases of COVID-19, bringing the total number of cases to 1,979.

Mosley said the Harlan County Health Department is working to obtain written confirmations of COVID-19 deaths. The current death total is reported at 42, as two additional deaths were confirmed on Friday, but locals expect this total to be much higher.

There are at least 209 active cases currently in Harlan County, with approximately 1,200 locals who have recovered from the virus.

“The number of recoveries are difficult to calculate due to incomplete follow-ups at this time. Just because a case is outside of their quarantine period, doesn’t mean they have recovered from the virus,” Mosley said. “We are hopeful as case counts come down, more follow-ups can be conducted on the nearly 700 cases we had in December, and more than 300 already this month to determine if they have recovered or are still battling the effects of this virus. Some cases from November are also still struggling with this virus and a few even remain hospitalized.”

Harlan County remains in the red category on the state incidence rate map as the county’s incidence rate is currently 62.1, the lowest point it has been since the first of December. As of Monday, there were 117 out of 120 total counties in Kentucky in the red category.

Gov. Andy Beshear announced 1,998 new cases on Monday in Kentucky, bringing the state’s total cases to 328,668. The state’s death total from COVID-19 is now at 3,167 and the positivity rate currently at 11.64 percent, down from last week.

The United States death toll from COVID-19 is now at 398,653, up more than 23,100 deaths since Monday evening of last week.

So far, 213,567 vaccines have been administered across Kentucky, up 83,000 vaccines administered since Monday of last week. This includes those allocated for and administered in long-term care facilities.

“The state has announced that the next three shipments of first-dose vaccines shipped over the next three weeks across the state will be administered to K-12 school personnel, a sub-group identified in Phase 1B of the state plan. Those scheduled to receive second doses of the vaccine during the next three weeks will still receive those on the day scheduled by the facility that administered your initial dose,” Mosley said.

Below is the state plan on implementation of the vaccine in phases:

  • Phase 1A: long term care facilities, assisted living facilities and healthcare personnel;
  • Phase 1B: First responders, anyone over the age of 70 and K-12 school personnel;
  • Phase 1C: Anyone over the age of 60, anyone older than 16 with CDC highest risk C19 risk conditions and all essential workers;
  • Phase 2: Anyone over the age of 40.

Mosley also thanked locals for the continued prayers for his family, who he said has been “abundantly blessed.”

“Stephanie is doing great and Jo Jo continues to improve. They still haven’t gotten their taste and smell back, but most other COVID-19 symptoms are gone. Praise the Lord! Sabby and I are still symptom free at this time, and we are very thankful,” he said.

For daily updates on COVID-19 cases in Harlan County, follow the Harlan County Health Department Facebook page.